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Master’s in Strategic Design

What is an M.A. in strategic design?

Strategic design speaks the language of business. A Master of Arts in strategic design provides students with an advanced understanding of design, business and communication theory. The program is a fully immersive environment that replicates the rhythms and expectations of a professional firm.

Why study strategic design at Furman?

Diverse and collaborative learners are drawn to the unique opportunities and experiences available through Furman’s strategic design program. Our roster of instructors includes Furman University’s prestigious research faculty and industry professionals who bring a wealth of experience from their current roles. Plan a visit to Furman’s beautiful campus or start your application today.

How will you learn?

This 18-month program provides students with an advanced understanding of design and art direction along with immersion into business and communication theory. Courses are designed to give you a portfolio school experience while providing a high-impact, engaged education customized to each student’s learning objectives and talents. Students will take core courses covering strategic marketing concepts such as consumer behavior, segmentation, distribution, aesthetics, typography and integrated communications. Furman’s Master of Arts in strategic design offers student experiences designed to help you adapt to the changing job market and provide you with industry connections for your transition into a creative career. You can do an internship in the field while you develop your thesis and portfolio, supported by mentoring and advising from Furman’s research faculty and professionals in the field.

Careers for M.A. in strategic design graduates

Our program will prepare you to understand the role of creative thinking in art direction, copywriting and design. You’ll be able to demonstrate competency and critical thinking in those three fields.

You’ll spend your last semester perfecting your portfolio, so that you can jump-start a career such as:

  • Account planner
  • Art director, creative director or graphic designer
  • Brand strategist
  • Cartoonist
  • Commercial photographer
  • Computer graphics and multimedia expert
  • Copywriter
  • Public relations and marketing manager
  • Illustrator
  • Surface designer

Strategic design courses: What will you study?

Strategic and Change Management

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Design Aesthetics and Strategy

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42
total credits earned over an 18-month period
25+
undergraduate degree majors represented
98%
job placement rate

What our students say

“The biggest reason I even chose this program was because it integrates design, business and communication. … I’m obviously very happy that I did in the end.” – Melanie Rankin ’20

Our faculty

You’ll tap into a widespread network of community and alumni mentors to help you on your individual educational path – and to the opportunities at the end of it. Furman’s strategic design faculty represents decades of study and real-world expertise. Take your first steps by contacting admissions or reading more about how to apply.

  • Jennifer Bernabe
    Title:

    Instructor, Art; Undergraduate Evening Studies Faculty

    Headshot of Jennifer Bernabe, visiting professor

    Jennifer Bernabe
    Title:

    Instructor, Art; Undergraduate Evening Studies Faculty

    Phone Number:

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  • Virginia Gerde
    Title:

    Professor and Chair, Business and Accounting

    Virginia Gerde

    Virginia Gerde
    Title:

    Professor and Chair, Business and Accounting

    Phone Number: 8642943649

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  • Brandon Inabinet
    Title:

    Professor, Communication Studies

    Inabinet

    Brandon Inabinet
    Title:

    Professor, Communication Studies

    Phone Number: 8038370537

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  • Ross McClain
    Title:

    Associate Professor of Art

    Ross McClain

    Ross McClain
    Title:

    Associate Professor of Art

    Phone Number: 8642942215

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  • FAQ

    What can you do with an M.A. in strategic design?

    Furman’s MASD provides students with an advanced understanding of design, business, and communication theory. Graduates will enter the job market ready to begin their creative careers with a portfolio of professional experience and a network of industry contacts. Potential careers include account planner, brand strategist, commercial photographer, desktop publisher, copywriter, art director, creative director, graphic designer, and public relations and marketing director.

    What is the average salary for graduates with an M.A. in strategic design?

    The average starting salary for graduates is $70,000 a year or more, based on reports from recent graduates.

    How long does it take to earn an M.A. in strategic design?

    The M.A. in strategic design at Furman is an 18-month, five-term program that begins in the fall.

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